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Court Jails Lecturer 21 Years For Raping Admission Seeker

A file photo of the Lagos State High Court in Ikeja



A Lagos High Court sitting in the Ikeja area has convicted and sentenced a former part-time lecturer, Afeez Baruwa, to 21 years imprisonment for raping an 18-year-old girl who was seeking admission into the university.

Baruwa was convicted on one count of rape leveled against him by the state government.

The convict was said to have raped the victim inside a study room when she was seeking admission into the university.

Justice Josephine Oyefeso who delivered the judgment on Thursday held that the prosecution has proven its case beyond reasonable doubt and, therefore, found the defendant guilty of the charge.

The defence counsel, in his allocutus (plea for mercy before sentence), said that rape was an offence of life imprisonment if found guilty.

He, therefore, asked the court to temper justice with mercy.

He also said that the convict was a first time offender, a married man with four kids and aged parents, all of whom he has to cater for.

In her sentence, Justice Oyefeso said she “cannot begin to imagine the emotional trauma of the girl”.

“The convict offended his family, the victim, the society and God,” she said.

The judge subsequently sentenced the convict to 21 years imprisonment.

The prosecution had alleged that the former lecturer raped the teenager at 9.25am on July 23, 2015, in Room 8 at the Faculty of Business Administration Annex building of UNILAG.

The victim’s father who was a friend of the lecturer had sought his help to secure admission for his daughter into the institution.

The rape was said to have occurred when she was in Baruwa’s office to make arrangements for her admission into the university.

Four prosecution witnesses had testified during Baruwa’s trial, including the complainant, her father, a medical doctor, and the investigating police officer.

The prosecution closed its case against the lecturer on January 23, 2018.

Baruwa testified solely in his defence, claiming that the complainant was his girlfriend and that he had consensual sexual intercourse with her.

EU Supports Nigeria With N32m To Tackle Lassa Fever

File photo



The European Commission has announced the allocation of €80,000 (N32 million) in humanitarian funding to assist families affected by the outbreak of Lassa Fever in Nigeria.

The commission announced this in a statement by a press officer with the Delegation of the European Union to Nigeria, Modestus Chukwulaka.

According to the statement, the funds will go towards supporting the Nigerian Red Cross in promoting hygiene practices and disease transmission control, as well as contribute to the identification of suspected cases, supporting contact tracing, and providing psychosocial support.

The commission was hopeful that the humanitarian aid would directly benefit communities in areas most affected by the outbreak.

It explained that the funding formed part of the EU’s overall contribution to the Disaster Relief Emergency Fund (DREF) of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC).

“In the two most affected states, Ondo and Edo, the main actions will focus on health education on signs and symptoms, prevention measure and behavioural change in food storage and handling; pest control activities, such as the distribution of rat traps/rat glues; and psychosocial support to affected people and their families.

“In another four states (Bauchi, Ebonyi, Taraba and Kano), awareness-raising initiatives will be launched for the general public, including the distribution of educational material and informative radio messages,” the statement read.

Lassa fever is an acute viral haemorrhagic fever (VHF), transmitted by rodents to humans, who become infected through contact with the excreta of infected rats, contaminated surfaces or food, and body fluids of infected persons.

While about 80 per cent of the infections go with no symptoms, other patients develop severe multi-system disease, the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control said.

Since the first week of January 2020, no fewer than 680 suspected cases have been reported by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), of which over 250 were confirmed as positive.

FG Asks US To Review Visa Restriction On Nigeria

A file photo of the Minister of Interior, Mr Rauf Aregbesola.

The Nigeria government has called on the United States of America to consider the long-standing relationship between the two countries and reverse its visa restrictions on Nigeria.

The Minister of Interior, Mr Rauf Aregbesola, made the call on Wednesday when he received the American Ambassador to Nigeria, Mary Leonard, and her team at his office in Abuja.

According to a statement from the ministry, the government of Nigeria believes that the cooperation with the United States will help address immigration and consular issues in control of persons seeking to enter both countries through the issuance of visa, passport, and other travel documents.

It recalled the role of Aregbesola as the chairman of the Presidential Committee on Citizen Data Management and Harmonisation.

The minister revealed that Nigeria has complied with most of the issues of concern raised by the US, stressing that Nigeria is not a pariah nation.

He listed some of the issues raised to include the uploading of over 700 stolen and lost passports on the database of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS).

Aregbesola, therefore, appealed to the US to review its visa validity to Nigerians from two years limit to at least five years.

He also called for the establishment of a third office in the country, in reciprocity with Nigeria which has establishments in Atlanta, New York, and Washington DC.

EFCC Arrests Ex-Governor’s Son, Audu Over Alleged Fraud

The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has arrested Mr Muhammed Audu for his alleged involvement in a fraud.

Muhammed is the son of the late Abubakar Audu, a former governor of Kogi State.

EFCC’s Acting Head of Media and publicity, Mr Tony Orilade, confirmed the arrest of the former governor’s son in a statement on Thursday.

According to him, the suspect was arrested on February 18 for allegedly diverting funds to the tune of several millions of dollars and billions of naira.

The EFCC alleged that Muhammed diverted the funds which were donated to the Nigerian Football Federation (NFF) to his personal use.

Investigations, according to the statement, revealed that the suspect allegedly used two of his companies, Mediterranean Hotels Limited and Mediterranean Sports, to divert the monies which he could not account for.

It added that Muhammed would be charged to court as soon the investigations were concluded.

APC Files Suit Asking Supreme Court To Reverse Judgment Sacking Lyon

A file photo of APC governorship candidate in Bayelsa State, David Lyon.

The All Progressives Congress (APC) has approached the Supreme Court with an application urging the court to reverse its decision on the governorship election in Bayelsa State.

In an application filed on Thursday by its team of lawyers led by a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Wole Olanipekun (SAN), the party sought a review of the judgement which disqualified its candidate in the election, Mr David Lyon.

It also asked the apex court to set aside the “wrong” interpretation given to its judgment of February 13, 2020, and the subsequent execution by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).

The party contended that the Supreme Court, in its judgment, misinterpreted the November 12, 2019 judgment of the Federal High Court in Abuja which the apex court affirmed.

It argued that the Supreme Court acted without jurisdiction and denied it the party a fair hearing when it proceeded to disqualify its governorship candidate.

The APC noted that this came even as the Federal High Court, in the judgment delivered by Justice Inyang Ekwo which the apex court affirmed, refused the plaintiffs’ prayer to disqualify Lyon.

It also faulted the interpretation given to the Supreme Court judgment by the electoral umpire in deciding to issue certificates of return to the candidates of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the election.

The party added that it was wrong for the Supreme Court to have voided its candidates’ participation in the election, when the judgment by the Federal High Court which disqualified its deputy governorship candidate, Senator Biobarakuma Degi-Eremienyo, was stayed as at when the election was conducted.

No date has been fixed for the hearing of the application.

Hope Uzodinma Visits Buhari, Seeks Refund Of N32bn To Imo

Imo State governor on Thursday visited President Muhammadu Buhari requesting for a refund of state funds spent building federal roads in the state.

Governor Hope Uzodimma while briefing state house correspondents after the private meeting with the President said the state is in financial distress and that the refunded money will help with the payment of pensions and salary arrears.

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The governor said the amount to be refunded is still being computed, however at the moment the figure they are hoping for a refund of is about N32billion.

Uzodimma added that he is committed to growing the state’s Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) and will be reviewing the state’s tax regime.

He calling on all Imo State indigenes to support his government and join him in working towards the growth and development of the state.

Uzodinma was on January 15, 2020, sworn in as the governor of Imo State.

This was after the Supreme Court verdict which nullified the election of Emeka Ihedioha as the governor of the state.